Anti-ter­ror drive to be stepped up

China and Uzbek­istan agree to in­ten­sify joint ac­tion amid in­creas­ing fears over ex­trem­ists

China Daily (Canada) - - FRONT PAGE - By AN BAIJIE in Tashkent and LI XIAOKUN in Bei­jing

China and Uzbek­istan agreed on Wed­nes­day to deepen their fight against ter­ror­ism amid ris­ing con­cerns over ex­trem­ists in Cen­tral and Western Asia.

The joint de­ci­sion was reached dur­ing Pres­i­dent Xi Jin­ping’s state visit to Uzbek­istan.

The two coun­tries have reached con­sen­sus on jointly com­bat­ing the “three forces of ter­ror­ism, sep­a­ratism and ex­trem­ism”, com­bat­ing cross­bor­der or­ga­nized crime, and jointly main­tain­ing re­gional peace and sta­bil­ity, Xi said af­ter talks with Uzbek Pres­i­dent Is­lam Ka­ri­mov.

Xi also said the two na­tions pledged to deepen en­ergy co­op­er­a­tion and en­sure the safety of the China-Cen­tral Asia gaso­line pipe­lines — which are vi­tal for China’s en­ergy se­cu­rity.

Xi be­gan his state visit to Uzbek­istan — his sec­ond since 2013 — on Tues­day. He will also at­tend the 16th meet­ing of the Shang­hai Co­op­er­a­tion Or­ga­ni­za­tion Coun­cil of Heads of State on Thurs­day and Fri­day in Tashkent, the Uzbek cap­i­tal.

China and Uzbek­istan share con­cerns about ter­ror­ism, with ex­trem­ists in the two coun­tries some­times con­spir­ing to­gether. Uzbek­istan is also a key point for ter­ror­ists want­ing to pen­e­trate China’s Xin­jiang Uygur au­ton­o­mous re­gion.

Ka­ri­mov said at a news brief­ing that Uzbek­istan firmly sup­ports China’s fight against ter­ror­ism, sep­a­ratism and ex­trem­ism.

De­scrib­ing China as “a great neigh­bor” with huge ad­van­tages in its econ­omy, in­no­va­tion and tal­ent, he called for ties with Bei­jing to be en­hanced.

Uzbek­istan firmly sup­ports China’s fight against ter­ror­ism...”

Ahead of Xi’s visit, China’s Min­istry of Pub­lic Se­cu­rity signed two agree­ments with Uzbek­istan’s Min­istry of In­ter­nal Af­fairs on jointly fight­ing drug-traf­fick­ing and or­ga­nized crime, and pro­tect­ing the safety of cross-bor­der pipe­lines.

Huang Ming, vice-min­is­ter of pub­lic se­cu­rity, said last week that global ter­ror­ist ac­tiv­i­ties are in­creas­ing and ter­ror­ist at­tacks re­main fre­quent, which makes co­op­er­a­tion be­tween China and Uzbek­istan on com­bat­ing ter­ror­ism “a must”.

The two coun­tries should strengthen in­for­ma­tion ex­changes, im­prove law-en­force­ment co­op­er­a­tion, and jointly fight ter­ror­ism, ex­trem­ism and sep­a­ratism, he said.

In re­cent years, the sixmem­ber Shang­hai Co­op­er­a­tion Or­ga­ni­za­tion has signed and im­ple­mented a num­ber of agree­ments, in­clud­ing the Shang­hai Con­ven­tion on com­bat­ing ter­ror­ism, sep­a­ratism and ex­trem­ism.

Con­tact the writ­ers at an­bai­jie@chi­nadaily.com.cn

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